Busiest US-Canada border crossing reopens after anti-vaccine mandate protesters cleared

Freedom Convoy arrest
Posted at 7:10 AM, Feb 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-14 08:50:12-05

WINDSOR, Ontario — The busiest U.S.-Canada border crossing is open after protesters demonstrating against COVID-19 measures blocked it for nearly a week.

However, a larger protest in the Canadian capital of Ottawa persists as city residents seethed over authorities' inability to reclaim the streets.

Demonstrations against COVID-19 restrictions and other issues have blocked several crossings along the U.S.-Canada border and hurt the economies of both nations.

Police in Windsor, Ontario, arrested 25 to 30 protesters and towed several vehicles Sunday near the Ambassador Bridge, which reopened to traffic late Sunday night.

The bridge connects Windsor to Detroit. It's responsible for 25% of all trade between the U.S. and Canada, carrying nearly 8,000 trucks with more than $323 million in goods every single day. About $100 million of that is auto parts, engines and vehicles coming from the Motor City.

Protesters had prevented traffic into Canada from crossing the Ambassador Bridge for six days, forcing truckers to route to another bridge dozes of miles to the north. That caused hours-long traffic jams along I-94 in Michigan.

A senior government official told The Associated Press that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau would meet virtually with the leaders of Canada's provinces on Monday morning about ongoing "Freedom Convoy" protests in other parts of the country.

The protesters are demonstrating against rules that require truckers entering Canada to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or submit to regular testing.